Many teachers feel like they have to follow the curriculum and teacher’s guide to the T. Games and activities are much more exciting than worksheets, and they can fit with the curriculum goals. It does take more work to find activities related to the lesson, but it makes a big difference for the students. Today and yesterday, my CT implemented games (two that I sent her and one of her own) into math and science blocks. The math ones were a tic-tac-toe partner game with subtracting mixed numbers, and an “I have/who has” type game with equations and answers – the science was also similar but with various organisms. The students had so much fun! They wanted to play each game multiple times and were really engaged in getting their answers correct (which involves learning the information). It it very important for the class to want to be taught and completing
is a bore.
I start teaching math next week and I strive to make it a fun experience for the weeks I am teaching. The school teachers are still required to send home the worksheets, but the in-class activities can be whatever I want as long as it is related to that day’s content. They are starting a unit on equivalent fractions and I am looking forward to finding fun games, activities, and hands-on ideas to teach 🙂 Learning should be an
for the students and I want them to explore all they know about equivalent fractions and have a great time while expanding their intelligences.
Inclusion is not simply about physical proximity. It is about intentionally planning for the success of all students.
This quote resonated with me when I read it a few days ago because it is really relevant to my future career in teaching. Simply teaching to everyone and placing them in standard rows, so they all can see equally, does not include the whole class. Each student is different and needs their accommodations to be successful in the classroom. What if a child that is placed in the front gets intimidated by that much attention but you don’t move him/her? This will affect how the student learns each day, and eventually he/she may give up or become frustrated. There is a variety of learning styles and levels in every classroom. Teachers must get to know how each individual student learns and how to engage the whole class. I have been taught multiple strategies for getting to know the students and including them effectively in the learning process. I hope to incorporate some in my every day style and am able to build a lasting community with each year of students! I have a plan to use morning meetings every day to help build that close bond between myself and the students as well as among the students themselves. It will take some time to get them speaking about personal issues, but there are a variety of questions and ways to have students share on a more individual level (such as dialogue journals). These journals are ways for students to talk about issues or excitements with the teacher each afternoon, and I respond to each one with integrity so they know I truly care 🙂
Here is an interesting link about things to keep in mind when teaching with inclusion
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Just realized I could change the font color and heading size 😮 (I thought it was stuck due to the theme – will be testing from now on)
Being observed by my supervisor last week was a very interesting experience! I was reviewing how to reduce fractions with a small group – the activity involved coloring in a set number of squares for each color, figuring out the fraction of 100, and whether or not to reduce. For each observation, the master’s student is meant to create a lesson plan and tell the supervisor what to look for while he/she is teaching. I asked him to make sure that I was not calling on the same students to over and over, watch my overall management of the students, and check that I didnt give too many hints. It was somewhat difficult because my group was in the middle of the hallway at desks, rather than in a room which made the scene distracting. The students also were very into their coloring so it was hard to bring them back when it was time to do the fractions and reducing. I was slightly nervous to be observed because it makes me self-conscious to know that I am being evaluated; however, once I started teaching the lesson, I totally forgot he was there and paid attention to the kids. After the lesson, my supervisor debriefed with me about what I thought I did well and he explained my areas to focus on next time. Transitions, clear expectations, and monitoring behavior were the main ones. It would have been easier if I gave expectations at the beginning and middle to give the students guidelines – such as put down the marker and eyes on me please. Transitioning between coloring and doing the math would have definitely helped. I knew that behavior was something to work on -since I wasn’t in her room or my own space, it was hard to keep kids’ attention and prevent them from talking to each other. This observation was very insightful for the many things that go on during teaching a lesson and what to remember to include. I’m glad we will have a few more observations this term and next! Looking forward to teaching math next week to the fifth graders 🙂
I am fortunate to be in a program that has excellent supervisors and individual support systems. The educators really are here to help us be successful with our classes, field placements, and the whole process of getting a job. They breakdown what’s needed to receive our license, make sure we understand when everything is due, and even discuss the interview process. This past Friday, we had a meeting about interviews in which two teachers gave a list of possible questions to be prepared for, as well as how to act/dress and what to expect. This meeting was very informative and we are having practice interviews in a few weeks to get us ready for the job fair in April. It is exciting to know that they are there for me to fall back on if I am freaking out. As teachers of future teachers, they really show us what’s it like to be a good educator (no matter what age group you are teaching, even adults!). They are perfect examples of how to truly care about your students 😀
In this fast-track Master’s, it is necessary to remember that we have wonderful resources to take advantage of when we really need it. I have been attending all the preparatory meetings and really listening to what they have to say. I have also emailed and negotiated issues with them when something arose. Your peers are very useful if they know the answer, but when they don’t, feel free to email the head of the program or someone else in the department. They are more than happy to answer and make you feel comfortable! Be grateful to your mentors and all the time/effort they put in – you won’t have them for much longer, so keep in touch as much as you can.
I have always been into doing crafts, like hand-making cards and bookmarks and such. I recently got into scrapbooking and am starting to be excited about decoupaging. Scrapbooking with pictures and fun stickers is very thrilling – I like organizing each page and finding the knickknacks needed for the chosen theme. Using modpodge seems like a cool, new crafting activity for me to pick up! It has been mentioned on a few of the DIY sites for easy decorations. There are so many different ideas that involve fabric, furniture, wall decor, and many other functions. It can help me stylize my classroom and apartment in a cute way that doesn’t cost too much.
Since I am new to decoupaging, I was trying to find some tips for what to create and breakdowns for how to use modpodge effectively. I found this really fun and easy-to-read blog called Modpodge Rocks. They give you a free e-book when you signup for subscription that shows you some initial ideas. I recommend it for anyone who wants to start using modpodge. I plan to find time on my weekends to complete various crafts and have fun 🙂
At the Friday seminar, the head of the program reminded us all of the things to come in the term. It is important to look forward because there are many steps to do for the three tasks in our placements that we have to complete for our license. She suggested that we put together a binder for each part with all the guidelines and make a Google calendar highlighting given deadlines. Since I finished my homework, I figured I would start organizing before I forgot or got back into the stress of school. My mom had one binder here already, so I printed out all the things I thought would be necessary (some of it was given to us in handout form) and placed in separate piles in the binder. I haven’t looked over the information yet because I didn’t want to stress myself out and the calendar isn’t setup.
As a future teacher, it is a good skill to be able to put together binders efficiently. They use them for lessons plans, materials, student work, or basically anything that could be placed into categories. I am a bit behind with these binders – I haven’t missed any deadlines, but I should have looked up information earlier so I am not scrambling to put together a schedule. There are also students and lessons we need to teach in our placements that I have to put in my schedule and talk to my CT about. Today was a good start on the organization and this week, I will be working on writing important details and coming up with dates.